Monday, September 8, 2014

Progress of sorts

Two Fridays ago I was all set to finally quilt my Seeing Stars quilt.  It was all basted. The sewing machine turned on. I had a quilting plan.  All I needed was a full bobbin of thread, which I proceeded to wind.  The bobbin then declined to come off the bobbin winder.

Full stop. Oh well, the machine was due for its annual spa visit (also known as annual cleaning and check-up) so I brought it in for service.  It came home this past Friday with a new bobbin winder (which apparently was not covered under warranty, which annoys me tremendously) and I started quilting on Friday night.  Saturday I did a bit more.  Saturday night I stomped upstairs in a stew, proclaiming I had turned the quilt into a lumpy, rumpled, distorted mess.  My husband says I sounded ready to pitch the whole thing out the window.

IMG_8621Believe me, the quilt was not lying flat.  Hill country would be a better description.  The quilt top was perfectly flat on the design wall, and as I was basting, so why the hills now?  The only thing I can come up with is that I might have stretched the backing in my efforts to make it smooth, and when I took it off the frame it relaxed and drew in and pulled in the top along with it.  It wasn’t obvious to me the whole week it sat basted on my sewing table though.

Today I added some stitching in the ditch cutting through the domed bits, which helped flatten things a bit.  There is still more puckering than I like, but now I can live with it. This is a picture of one of the better sections.  I do still love those fabrics…


I am NOT taking close-ups of the wavering not-so-straight lines, or the ditch stitching that jumped out of the ditch, or the seam line that should be straight but got distorted somehow as I wrestled the quilt around.

I guess you can tell I’m still not very pleased, though really, I am much less disgruntled now than on the weekend.  I’ve been alternating between two mantras as I quilted away today.  First up, “Galloping horse, galloping horse…”  You know, the horse from the “if you can’t see it from the back of a galloping horse, don’t worry about it” saying.  Well, I don’t have a galloping horse to view the quit from, but I’m guessing the imperfections wouldn’t be glaring from that vantage point.

Mantra number two, a quote posted by Jasmine recently: “Perfect isn’t flawless.  Perfect is finished.”  As this quit top sat unquilted for 15 months, it’s past time for it to reach this kind of perfection!  Almost there.  I just have to finish quilting the borders.  The first bit I quilted puckered up, of course.  The bobbin incident should have tipped me off that this quilt wouldn’t be easy!

Galloping horse, perfect is finished, galloping horse, perfect is finished….I’m off to (hopefully) finish the quilting!


  1. It is a wonderful quilt! I don't seem to mind a bit of reminds me that it is hand made from the heart and not factory produced.

  2. A similar saying from my Texas guild was "Done is better than perfect." There's not a lot of my quilting that is "perfect" but we all do strive for perfection. We all have a "life" beyond quilting to remind us that it's the people who receive the quilts that are most important anyway. Keep up the good work!

  3. It is a beautiful quilt, and somehow, to me anyway, it looks very comfortable, much more so than a quilt that is as flat as a concrete slab; (flat as a flitter, whatever that is!). Looks like a good "snuggle" quilt to me. ---"Love"

  4. I enjoyed your post. I just finished one of my quilts in a very similar way - it's been sitting since last winter, has a wavy border, some puckers, etc. But, dang it! - I'm using it anyway!

  5. I think the quilt looks great, it would probably crinkle up a bit when you wash it anyway, so I don't think it will be noticeable on the finished quilt. I always remind myself that any "flaws" prove I made it, if I'd wanted something perfect I could have bought a mass produced item from a shop. Also remember that while you can see the "flaws" chances are, nobody else will, even if you point them out.

  6. It looks lovely to me! I agree finished is better than perfect - especially since once washed and well loved no one will ever see any imperfections. Time to pick up dinner and then pin some prairie points on.... I went with black borders and will do a rainbow of color around for the points =). I hope to start quilting it on Friday if all goes well.

  7. It is looking practically perfect to me. :) I stretched the batting on two different quilts and got puckers on the back. It was a good learning experience for me, but my boys don't care. They like the front better anyway.

  8. It looks perfectly pretty to me Joanne, but i do love your two mantras. I do that galloping horse thing for my own creations from time to time.

  9. Looks good to me too and I'm not on a galloping horse ;) This is a very beautiful quilt - once it is washed - you will notice nothing.

    I find that once a project "heads south" I can pretty much count on it continuing that way until it hits the southern most tip of Argentina! HA


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